Showing posts with label Middle East. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Middle East. Show all posts

Monday, April 15, 2024

Israeli media: Israeli politicians should thank Jordan; Jordan summons Iran's ambassador to protest

    Monday, April 15, 2024   No comments

Some Israeli media outlets want Jordan to be thanked for standing with Israel during Iran's retaliatory strike for the attack on its diplomatic facilities in Syria. These recent developments are forcing many regional and global actors to make tough decisions and the effects of those decisions may not be felt or known immediately, testifying to the power of these events as transformative ones. 

"While Netanyahu shows nothing but ingratitude towards Biden, the Iranian attack produced the most significant show of support in the history of Israeli-U.S. relations. It also proves the importance of a regional alliance of moderates, including the Palestinians." said the daily Haaretz.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the Iranian ambassador in Amman and asked his country to stop “questioning” Jordan’s positions on the Palestinian issue after the Kingdom announced the interception of “flying objects” during the Iranian attack on Israel.

Foreign Minister Ayman Al-Safadi said, “Today (Sunday) the ministry summoned the Iranian ambassador and sent him a clear message that these insults to Jordan must stop, and this questioning of Jordan’s positions must stop.”

He added, "Unfortunately, there were offensive statements (against Jordan) by the Iranian media, including the Iranian official news agency."

Al-Safadi explained that "Iran's problem is with Israel and not with Jordan, and neither Iran nor anyone else can outbid what Jordan is doing, what it offers, and what it has provided historically for Palestine."

He stressed that "if this danger was coming from Israel, Jordan would take the same action it did, and this is a position we confirm clearly and frankly, and we will not allow anyone to endanger the security of Jordan and the Jordanians."

Jordan confirmed on Sunday that it had intercepted "flying objects" that violated its airspace on Saturday night, coinciding with the missile and drone attack launched by Iran on Israel.

Video clips showed the interception of objects in the Kingdom's airspace during the night, at a time when the remains of at least one missile fell in the Marj Al-Hamam area in the Jordanian capital. Users of social media platforms in the Kingdom also shared video clips showing the wreckage of another missile in the Al-Hasa area in the Tafila Governorate in the south of the Kingdom.

Iran launched more than 300 drones and missiles at Israel on Saturday night, in the first attack launched by Iran directly from its territory on Israel, and not through groups loyal to it. It came in response to a missile attack that targeted the consular section of the Iranian embassy in Damascus at the beginning of this April.

Related, French President Emmanuel Macron revealed on Monday that his country used its base in Jordan to intercept Iranian air targets during the attack on Israel, at the request of the Jordanian authorities.

The French President said, in a television interview, that his country's forces stationed in Jordan intercepted Iranian drones and missiles that were heading to Israeli sites, explaining that the French planes were launched from a French base that has been on Jordanian territory for years.

Yesterday, Sunday, the Jordanian government announced that it was “dealing with some flying objects” that entered the country’s airspace, in reference to the drones and missiles that Iran launched against “Israel.”

Israeli media described the Jordanian move as “historic cooperation,” adding that “for the first time, military cooperation between the two parties is taking place publicly.”

 The decision by the rulers of Jordan to be involved in this conflict may further increase division among Jordanians, many of whom either sympathize with Palestinians or are Palestinians themselves, as the kingdom is home to one of the largest displaced Palestinian communities in the world.

Monday, April 08, 2024

Was Biden angry with Netanyahu for attacking Iran’s diplomatic building, a treaty violation, or for killing aid workers, a war crime, or both?

    Monday, April 08, 2024   No comments

With news reports about US administration reaching out to Iran with an offer to stop its promise of retaliatory strikes against Israel for the latter's attack on Iran's diplomatic facility in Syria, and with Iran's foreign minister making an unscheduled trip to Oman yesterday, it appears that Biden used the killing of aid workers to mask his anger with Israel crossing a red line and carrying out what is essentially a direct attack on Iran.

There is no doubt that Iran can retaliate directly against Israel. It did so against the US when Trump assassinated Soleimani in January 2020. An Iranian retaliatory attack against Israel could set new course for the entire region, however. 

If Iran attacks Israel directly, the right-wing government in Israel will be forced to retaliate or it will collapse. If it were to retaliate to the retaliation, the armed confrontation enters a new phase, similar to the active front with Hezbollah. That will be catastrophic for Israel for many reasons.

Israel cannot invade Iran and if the US does not get involved directly, all Israel can do is to trade rockets and bombs from distance. That formular favors Iran for many reasons, too.  

First, Iran is a much larger country, and its weapons systems are dispersed all over the country. It will not be possible for Israel to take out all weapons systems. If that was possible, US could have done that in Yemen where a much smaller and less prepared group, the Houthis, have overcome a military Western coalition that has been bombing them for months.

Second, Iran has a formidable array of weapons, rockets and drones, that can be launched for months or even years. In addition to these long-distance weapons, Iran can rely on its allies in Gaza, Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq to provide support.

Iran will respond given that the highest authority in the country already stated that Iran will receive “a slap”. The question is whether US diplomacy will manage to limit Iran’s response to limits of Israel’s attack. That is, an attack on Israeli diplomatic missions and perhaps an attack on military installations in occupied territories to end the cycle. Iran has the option to attack Israel directly because it considers its diplomatic facilities sovereign territories of Iran. However, attacking Israel diplomatic facilities places Iran outside International norms, too, which it has been using to get the world community to condemn it. 

All these factors give credence to the reporting about the US offer to Iran, possibly through Oman. Because all these indicator show that Israel committed a grave mistake when it attacked a diplomatic facility. It may not just US acting to prevent the widening of a conflict, it is likely that Israel wants to limit the damage too. 

The following media reports provide more contect to what might be behind the scene negotiations.

Iranian diplomatic sources say the US is trying to convince Iran not to retaliate against Israel for its bombing of the Iranian embassy in Syria earlier this month, Al-Jarida newspaper reported on 8 April.

The Israeli strike targeted a building attached to the Iranian embassy in Damascus. It led to the killing of the commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Zahedi, his deputy, and five other IRGC officers.

A source in the Iranian foreign ministry told Al-Jarida that Washington offered Tehran direct negotiations with Tel Aviv to de-escalate the conflict.  

According to the source, Washington will guarantee to persuade Tel Aviv to stop its military operations in Syria and Lebanon on the condition that Iran commit not to retaliate against Israel for the Damascus attack.

At the same time, a diplomatic source in Beirut told Al-Jarida that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected an American proposal to pledge to stop attacks in Syria.

The source added that Iranian leader Ali Khamenei is reviewing the US offer but is not expected to accept it if it does not include guarantees for a comprehensive ceasefire in Gaza and to stop all Israeli and US attacks on Iranian targets or those belonging to Iran's allies in the Axis of Resistance.

The source revealed that the Iranians had also previously received a verbal Israeli proposal via a Gulf state. In the proposal, Tel Aviv claimed it was ready to stop operations against Iranian targets in Syria and Lebanon in exchange for Tehran abandoning retaliation for the killing of Zahedi, whose killing was considered the most significant blow to Iran since the assassination of Qassem Soleimani.

According to the source, the Iranian Foreign Ministry responded to the Israeli message by saying that the proposal must also include a ceasefire in Gaza.

However, some IRGC leaders were unhappy with the foreign ministry's response, viewing the Israeli proposal as a trap. The IRGC leaders argued that any negotiations with Israel must take place only after Iran has retaliated.

The source stated that IRGC commanders believe that Israel's targeting of the Iranian consulate is an opportunity that should not be missed to strike a strong blow at Israel, especially since the consular building in Damascus is considered sovereign Iranian territory and was targeted in a clear violation of international law.

The source said that the IRGC leadership believes Washington will not enter a war with Iran even if it retaliates against Israel. They also consider that an adequately harsh strike against Israel will compel it to accept a ceasefire in Gaza and abandon any plans to invade Lebanon or escalate its bombing in Syria.

Western government continue to lose credibility

Despite the fact that the attack on Iran’s diplomatic mission in Syria violated global treaties including the Vienna Conventions regulating diplomatic and consular relations and the immunities of diplomats and headquarters (1961, 1963, 1969) and the Rome Statute, US government and its Western allies did not explicitly condemn the attack. Instead, they called on Iran to exert “self-restraint.” 

On Thursday, the German Foreign Ministry called, through a statement, on all parties in the Middle East to calm down, exercise restraint, and act responsibly, following a call by Minister Annalena Baerbock who discussed the matter with Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian.

On Thursday, British Foreign Secretary David Cameron warned of “expanding conflicts”. During a phone call with his Iranian counterpart, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, according to a statement by the Iranian Foreign Ministry that was reported by local media outlets, including the private “Tasnim” agency.

According to the agency, the Iranian Foreign Ministry quoted Cameron as saying that he asked Iran to exercise restraint, and said that “lack of restraint on the part of the parties could lead to further expansion of conflicts in the region.”

Regional powers on the other hand voiced condemnation, directly accusing Israel of violating international norms.

Turkey denounced, in a Foreign Ministry statement, the bombing and considered it a violation of international law, warning that the attack may lead to an exacerbation of the conflict in the region.

Saudi Arabia also condemned the targeting in a Foreign Ministry statement, expressing its “categorical rejection of targeting diplomatic facilities for any justification, and under any pretext.”

In a brief Foreign Ministry statement, the UAE condemned “the targeting of the Iranian diplomatic mission in the Syrian capital, Damascus,” without any additional comment.

Qatar also condemned, in a Foreign Ministry statement, the attack, and considered it “a blatant violation of international agreements and conventions,” stressing “its complete rejection of targeting diplomatic and consular missions and the necessity of providing protection for their employees in accordance with the rules of international law.”

Egypt said, in a statement to the Foreign Ministry, “We categorically reject the attack on diplomatic facilities under any justification, and we stand in solidarity with Syria in respecting its sovereignty and the integrity of its lands and people.”

Kuwait also considered, in a Foreign Ministry statement, the attack a “flagrant assault,” renewing its call on “the international community and the Security Council to assume its responsibilities towards taking the necessary measures and exerting the necessary efforts to preserve the safety and stability of the countries of the region and reduce tension and escalation.”

In a statement condemning the attack, the Omani Foreign Ministry stressed “the need to stop the escalation in the region and reject aggression and other actions that threaten security and stability,” expressing condolences to the families of the victims and wishing a speedy recovery to the injured.

Iraq also confirmed in a Foreign Ministry statement that the attack “represents a clear and flagrant violation of international law and Syrian sovereignty,” warning that “the expansion of the cycle of violence in the region will lead to more chaos and instability.”

China and Russia, on the other hand, took advantage of Western reluctance to denounce the flouting of international law


Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that his country strongly condemns the Israeli attack and stresses that the security of diplomatic institutions cannot be violated. He stressed in a press conference in Beijing that “China opposes any actions that lead to escalation of tensions in the Middle East region.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry on Monday strongly condemned the Israeli attack on the Iranian consulate building in the Syrian capital Damascus earlier in the day, denouncing the action as "unacceptable."
"We consider any attacks on diplomatic and consular facilities, the inviolability of which is guaranteed by the relevant Vienna Conventions, to be categorically unacceptable," the ministry said in a statement.
Noting that the attack was carried out in a densely populated metropolitan area with a high risk of mass civilian casualties, the ministry said such "aggressive" actions by Israel are "absolutely unacceptable and must be stopped."

 


Wednesday, February 07, 2024

The midnight statement of the Saudi Foreign Ministry regarding normalization: What prompted it?

    Wednesday, February 07, 2024   No comments

The abstract of this developing story is this: The Saudi rulers are no longer benefiting from the diplomacy of ambiguity in relations to normalization with Israel. So they took a decisive step at the heels of the fifth visit by the US top diplomat to state in clear and unambiguous terms that Saudi Arabia will not take any steps towards normalization until concrete steps are taken to stop the war in Gaza and establish and recognize an independent Palestinian state over the 1967 borders. Some context, including reactions by media outlets and political entities will provide more clarity.  

“Negotiations aimed at normalizing relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel continue to advance.” A phrase that the United States and “Israel” have continued to promote continuously, in various forms, and at an intense pace, specifically after October 7, 2023. But what the Saudi statement stated regarding the relationship with “Israel” and the conditions set by Riyadh debunks the falsehood of the Israeli and American narrative in this context, and brings Riyadh into the equation of cards that pressure the occupation to force it to stop its aggression against Gaza. What are the implications of the statement?

The statement issued by the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, today, Wednesday, which stressed the Saudi insistence on the necessity of establishing an independent Palestinian state on the 1967 borders, with “East Jerusalem” as its capital, stopping the aggression against Gaza, and complete withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, as a condition for establishing diplomatic relations with the Israeli occupation, came. As a response to the American leaks, which claimed that Saudi Arabia was ready to accept a political commitment from “Israel” to establish a Palestinian state, in order to conclude a defense agreement with Washington, before the American presidential elections, and here the talk is about a “political commitment” and not practical steps.

In this context, the American newspaper "Washington Post" reported that the United States informed "Israel" that the Saudi normalization agreement should begin within the next two months.

According to the newspaper, this is partly because Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is demanding, as part of the normalization package, a treaty that provides NATO-like guarantees for Saudi security.

Given that it is an election year in the United States, according to the newspaper, such a deal would likely receive Senate approval by June, “and if it is later than that, it will be buried under campaign politics.”

However, all of these accounts contradict the official Saudi position, which was issued just one day after US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken’s visit to Saudi Arabia and his meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Riyadh.

The Saudi newspaper “Okaz” said that the Kingdom’s statement, including its clear positions regarding normalization with “Israel,” comes to “refute all the allegations made by Washington and Tel Aviv to serve their interests.”

According to the Saudi newspaper, the American-Israeli leaks, which attempt to mislead public opinion that the Kingdom is open to the idea of establishing a normal relationship with “Israel” in light of its continued aggression against the Gaza Strip, aim to influence the Saudi effort aimed at achieving an immediate ceasefire.

The newspaper added, "The Kingdom's statement blocked the way for any bidding regarding the Kingdom's firm and historical position towards the issue of Palestine and its permanent support for the rights of the Palestinian people, strengthening their steadfastness, and providing them with a decent life."

The Saudi position expressed in the Foreign Ministry’s statement regarding the necessity of resolving the Palestinian issue first and foremost and establishing their independent state is, according to the Saudi newspaper, “a historical position par excellence.”

Two weeks ago, the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Rima bint Bandar Al Saud, confirmed that her country is unable to continue discussions regarding the normalization agreement with the Israeli occupation entity before the ceasefire in the Gaza Strip. Noting here that the idea of “normalization” is widely and popularly rejected in Saudi Arabia, as expressed in the latest opinion polls, which were conducted by the Washington Institute in December 2023.

The poll results show that (96%) agree with the proposal that “the Arab countries must immediately cut off all diplomatic, political, economic and any other contacts with Israel, in protest against its military action in Gaza.”

The results of the survey also showed that the popularity of the Hamas movement has increased significantly among Saudis, as there was a thirty-point shift in positive attitudes towards the movement, from only 10% in August 2023 to 40% in December 2023.

The opinion poll indicated that (91%) of Saudis agree with the statement that “despite the destruction and loss of life, this war in Gaza is a victory for the Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims.”

The first reaction to the Saudi Foreign Ministry's statement came in the Israeli newspaper "Jerusalem Post", where it considered that the United States had hoped that "Israel's" willingness to engage in a "peace" process towards a two-state solution would be sufficient to allow the issue to move forward, but, within hours Saudi Arabia made clear that this was not the case, issuing a sharp statement in the middle of the night.

The newspaper saw that Saudi Arabia linked the normalization process to the war on Gaza, and said that to achieve the normalization agreement, “the Israeli war on the Gaza Strip must stop and all Israeli occupation forces must withdraw from the Gaza Strip.”

The newspaper commented by saying, "Israel's willingness to make peace is not enough for the Saudis."

Commenting on the statement, Israeli commentators were quick to consider it “an expression of Saudi anger at the statements of US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, who touched on the normalization talks that preceded the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation - October 7 during a press conference earlier this week, and pointed out that These discussions are continuing, and his country has received positive reactions from both parties (Saudi Arabia and Israel), within what he described as a separate track and not specifically related to trying to reach a truce in Gaza.

This comes after what Reuters reported on Friday that Saudi Arabia would be ready to accept a political commitment from Israel to establish a Palestinian state in order to conclude a defense agreement with Washington before the US presidential elections.

According to Reuters, in order to create room for maneuver in the talks on recognizing “Israel” and putting the American agreement back on track, Saudi officials told their American counterparts that Riyadh would not insist that “Israel” take concrete steps to create a Palestinian state, and that it would “accept, in lieu of This includes a political commitment to establishing a Palestinian state within the two-state solution policy.”

Also, one regional source told Reuters that Saudi officials secretly urged Washington to pressure Israel to end the Gaza war and commit to a “political horizon” for a Palestinian state, saying that Riyadh would then normalize relations and help finance the reconstruction of Gaza.

Earlier, the American newspaper "Washington Post" reported that the United States informed "Israel" that the Saudi normalization agreement should begin within the next two months.

According to the newspaper, this is partly because Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is demanding, as part of the normalization package, a treaty that provides NATO-like guarantees for Saudi security.

Given that it is an election year in the United States, according to the newspaper, such a deal would likely receive Senate approval by June, “and if it is delayed, it will be buried under campaign politics.”

Two days ago, Saudi Arabia resumed talks with the United States regarding establishing closer “defense relations” after stopping them following the events of October 7, 2023, according to what the American “Bloomberg” agency reported, citing sources.

Two weeks ago, the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Rima bint Bandar Al Saud, confirmed that her country is unable to continue discussions regarding the normalization agreement with the Israeli occupation entity before the ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

It is noteworthy that the administration of US President Joe Biden is pressuring Saudi Arabia to conclude a normalization deal. In return, the Saudi Crown Prince sets conditions for its completion, including “obtaining security guarantees from Washington and helping to develop a civilian nuclear program.”

Thursday, December 07, 2023

But We Must Speak: Ta-Nehisi Coates and Rashid Khalidi on Israeli Occupation, Apartheid & the 100-Year War on Palestine

    Thursday, December 07, 2023   No comments

ISR WEEKLY connects you to a timely and informative program hosted by Democracy Now!:

In this special broadcast, we air excerpts from a recent event organized by the Palestine Festival of Literature at the Union Theological Seminary here in New York. The event featured a discussion between the acclaimed writer Ta-Nehisi Coates and Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi. Coates won the National Book Award for his book Between the World and Me. Rashid Khalidi is the Edward Said professor of modern Arab studies at Columbia. His books include The Hundred Years’ War on Palestine. Their conversation was moderated by civil rights attorney Michelle Alexander.


 

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Former US official: Killing 4,000 Palestinian children is “not enough”

    Wednesday, November 22, 2023   No comments
To understand why US foreign policy in the Middle East was a complete failure, listen to this former US official, talk to a NYC food cart operator and tell him how he really feels about Muhammad, Quran, Muslims, Egypt, and the war in Gaza.

Stuart Seldowitz, a former US State Department official under President Barack Obama, said that the killing of 4,000 Palestinian children in the Gaza Strip is “not enough,” in a scene that sparked great criticism and reactions.

Seldowitz served as the acting director for the National Security Council South Asia Directorate under the Obama administration. He also worked as a senior political officer in the State Department’s Office of Israel and Palestinian Affairs.

Seldowitz appeared in a video clip circulating on social media platforms, harassing a young Egyptian man who works as a street food vendor in New York by calling him a "terrorist."

The young man documented, via a video clip, that this former official came to him several times and provoked him in many ways. Among them was his inappropriate talk about Islam, and he also threatened to deport him from America.


The United States provides unlimited support to Israel during its war on the Gaza Strip, which has been ongoing for more than 6 weeks and has left, to date, more than 14,000 martyrs, including about 5,800 children, in addition to tens of thousands injured and displaced due to the violent Israeli bombing.

Some excerpts:

Scenes posted on the “X” platform show the street vendor repeatedly explaining to Seldowitz that he is currently working, asking him to stay away from him. However, the latter refused and insulted him, calling him ignorant because he did not master English.


Seldowitz, after continuing to harass the street vendor, accusing him of supporting the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) and "terrorism," told him, "Do you know? If we kill 4,000 Palestinian children. That's not enough, it's not enough."

In other scenes, Seldowitz also appears harassing the seller by uttering provocative and insulting words toward the Prophet Muhammad, may God bless him and grant him peace, and the Holy Quran.

"What do you speak? You speak Arabic, the language of the Quran, the holy Quran that some people use as a toilet. What do you think of that, people who used the Quran as a toilet? Does it bother you?" Seldowitz asks mockingly.

"That’s why you're selling food in a food cart, because you’re ignorant. But you should learn English. It’ll help you when they deport you back to Egypt and then the Mukhabarat wants to interview you.”

In another video, he harasses the same vendor but is interrupted by a bystander who tells him to leave, saying "It's not right; you are harassing."

 

Thursday, June 15, 2023

China's president, Xi, calls for a Palestinian state to become full member of UN

    Thursday, June 15, 2023   No comments

Meeting the Palestinian president, China's president, Xi, calls for a Palestinian state to become full member of UN.

Chinese President Xi Jinping reiterated to Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas on Wednesday his call for a state of Palestine to become a "full member" of the United Nations, state media reported.

The Palestinian President arrived in Beijing, on Monday, on his fifth official visit, which will continue until Friday.

The Chinese president told his Palestinian counterpart at a reception in the Great Hall of the People that China "is ready to strengthen coordination and cooperation with the Palestinian side, in the face of a century of global changes and new developments in the situation in the Middle East."

He added, "Today, we will jointly announce the establishment of a strategic partnership between China and Palestine, which will represent an important milestone in the history of bilateral relations."

Abbas is holding talks with senior Chinese leaders, including Premier Li Qiang, where the two sides' discussions will discuss ways to strengthen relations and confront the "long-term challenges" of the Israeli occupation of Palestine.


It is noteworthy that the two presidents signed a card issuing a Palestinian stamp issued on the occasion of the 35th anniversary of Chinese-Palestinian diplomatic relations.


A spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Wang Wenbin, said in a regular press conference, Friday, that “President Abbas is an old friend of the Chinese people,” pointing out that he is the first Arab head of state that China has received this year, and that this embodies the “high level of Chinese-Chinese relations.” Traditionally good Palestinian.


Winbin affirmed that "the Palestinian issue is the core of the Middle East issue, and affects peace and stability in it, and international justice and justice."


President Abbas expressed his appreciation for China's agreement to join the State of Palestine as a dialogue partner in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, pending the approval of other member states.

And he considered that "these regional gatherings and similar ones are an opportunity to strengthen relations, and for the peoples and countries of the world to have a fair opportunity for development and progress, away from manifestations of domination and exploitation."


In April's UNSC meeting, China representative called for a new approach to solving the Palestinian question. In his remarks at a meeting of the Security Council, Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the United Nations, stressed the importance of upholding fairness and justice on the Palestinian issue.


He said, "What is lacking in resolving the Palestinian issue is not a grand plan, but rather a living conscience to establish justice. The fulfillment of the Security Council's responsibilities does not depend on blatant slogans, but on concrete measures."


"On issues related to the future and fate of the Palestinian people, no party has the right to use the veto," Zhang added.


Xi expressed Beijing's position during a summit with Arab countries in Saudi Arabia in December, although the latest call comes as the Asian powerhouse works to strengthen its role as mediator in the Middle East.

Xi met Abbas during the December trip and pledged to "work for an early, just and durable solution to the Palestinian issue".

Beijing has since positioned itself as a mediator in the Middle East, brokering the restoration of ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia -- rivals in a region where the United States has for decades been the main powerbroker.

The Saudi-Iranian relations have improved since the China sponsored agreement. Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia Faisal bin Farhan Al-Saud will travel to Tehran on Saturday for talks with senior Iranian officials.

The top Saudi diplomat and his delegation will visit Tehran on June 17 to hold a series of talks with Iranian officials.

Sources had reported earlier that the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Tehran will reopen during the ministerial visit to Iran.

The foreign ministers of Iran and Saudi Arabia held a meeting in South Africa in early June to weigh plans for the full restoration of relations and broaden regional and economic cooperation between Tehran and Riyadh.

After several days of intensive negotiations hosted by China, Iran and Saudi Arabia clinched a deal on March 10 to restore diplomatic relations and reopen embassies and missions after seven years of estrangement.


******

Commenting on these developments, some media outlets and think tank analysis sites highlighted the geopolitical changes occuring since the start of the war in Ukraine. "The United States of America is lagging behind while the Middle East is embracing a new geopolitical era," said the Responsible Statecraft magazine, in a report.


"As the region progresses towards a multipolar system, Washington must promote more cooperation and economic development," the magazine said.


It added, "Amidst the reopening of Iranian and Saudi diplomatic missions after a 7-year hiatus, symbolizing their official rapprochement and the changing geopolitical dynamics in the Persian Gulf, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken arrived in Riyadh last week with an old agenda."


The magazine commented, "Washington's failure to adapt to the new regional realities left it isolated, as its policies no longer resonate with its partners in the region."

And while "the United States remains deeply invested in the region for the foreseeable future, its policies have become the main impediment to diplomatic engagements, as well as economic development and integration in the broader Middle East," according to the magazine.


For example, the US administration implicated the Gulf in the war on Yemen, and it, however, made it clear that it was "not ready to solve it," according to Responsible Craft.


Likewise, “the absence of the United States in recent regional developments has provided opportunities for other global actors to assert their influence and enhance multilateral cooperation,” as the upcoming summit between Iran, the GCC and China in Beijing and the third meeting of the Baghdad conference later this year will provide “multiple avenues.” parties for dialogue and cooperation.


It is worth mentioning here that the United States will be absent from both events, which further highlights its isolation and diminished influence in the region.


Accordingly, the magazine concluded, "The changing dynamics and the emergence of alternative centers of power necessitate a recalibration of US policies in line with new geopolitical shifts throughout the Middle East."


She made it clear that this can be achieved by adopting a multipolar system and promoting economic development, and Washington should allow the region to further explore these diplomatic avenues and not hinder them.



Similarly, the European electronic magazine "Modern Policy" dealt with the issue of political transformations in what it called "the era of self-help in the post-American Middle East," stressing that the Gulf states will seek to form their foreign alliances based on their interests in the region.


The magazine explained that the US's relations in the region are not only with Saudi Arabia, but also with all Arab countries in the Gulf, noting that these relations today are "far from their golden years."


And she stressed, in the context, that if the countries of the region cannot see a role for the United States in stabilizing and maintaining stability, and if they cannot obtain a real American contribution to their security, then of course they will have to search for other potential partners.


She pointed out that the new isolation of the United States had dire consequences for the American leadership in the Middle East, which led to a great vacuum in its authority, which it tried to ensure its expansion in the region.

The magazine talked about Russia's efforts to fill this void in countries such as Syria and Libya, in addition to the efforts of regional powers such as Iran, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Turkey to exercise greater influence within their areas of influence.

Relations between the United States and the countries of the region deteriorated almost globally, as a result of the United States ignoring the influence of local powers, for a period of time, in addition to its failure to realize the need for urgent intervention to repair these relations.

Also, China's work in the region as a mediator comes at the expense of the American role in it, especially since Beijing succeeds in reconciling the opponents in the region and putting an effective end to the conflicts in it, unlike the United States, according to the magazine, especially since it refrains from imposing political conditions on Middle Eastern countries during reconciliation efforts.




Friday, June 09, 2023

A joint Gulf-American statement issued after the joint ministerial meeting of the strategic partnership between the Gulf Cooperation Council states and the United States

    Friday, June 09, 2023   No comments


A joint Gulf-American statement issued after the joint ministerial meeting of the strategic partnership between the Gulf Cooperation Council states and the United States stressed the need to commit to reaching a political solution in Syria.

The Foreign Ministers of the Cooperation Council and the US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, held the meeting on Wednesday evening, June 7, under the chairmanship of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Sultanate of Oman, Badr bin Hamad al-Busaidi, who is the chairman of the current session of the meeting.

The ministerial meeting, which was held at the headquarters of the General Secretariat in Riyadh, discussed a package of regional issues, including Syria.

On the Syrian issue: The statement affirmed commitment to reaching a political solution to the Syrian crisis in a way that preserves Syria's unity and sovereignty, and meets the aspirations of its people in line with UN Security Council Resolution No. 2254. The ministers welcomed the Arab efforts to resolve the crisis in a step-for-step manner in accordance with Security Council resolution. 2254, as agreed upon during the Amman Consultative Meeting of the Arab Ministerial Contact Group on Syria on May 1, 2023.

In the joint statement, the ministers reaffirmed their support for the US and coalition forces working to achieve the defeat of ISIS in Syria, and condemned all actions that threaten the safety and security of these forces.

The two sides also stressed the need to create safe conditions for the safe, dignified and voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced persons in accordance with the standards of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and the importance of providing the necessary support to Syrian refugees and the countries that host them.

The statement welcomed the UN Secretary-General's call to renew the Security Council's mandate for a period of 12 months to operate the cross-border mechanism, and expressed support for the inclusion of all currently open border crossings (Bab al-Hawa, Bab al-Salam and al-Rai) in a Security Council resolution next month.

The two sides also discussed the issue of “arbitrarily detained and missing persons,” as mentioned in the “Oman” statement and Security Council Resolution “2254,” and in coordination with all concerned parties.



The following is the text of the statement:

The foreign ministers of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf held the joint ministerial meeting of the strategic partnership between the countries of the Cooperation Council and the United States of America, chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Sultanate of Oman - the current session chairman - Badr bin Hamad bin Hamoud Al-Busaidi, at the headquarters of the General Secretariat in Riyadh, with the participation of: Member of the Council of Ministers and Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates Sheikh Shakhbout bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Political Affairs in Bahrain Dr. Sheikh Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah, Prime Minister and Minister The Foreign Ministry of the State of Qatar, Sheikh Muhammad bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Kuwait, Sheikh Salem Abdullah Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, the Secretary of State of the United States of America Anthony Blinken, and the Secretary-General of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, Jassem Muhammad Al-Budaiwi.

On Wednesday, June 7, 2023, the GCC foreign ministers met at the headquarters of the General Secretariat of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, the Secretary of State of the United States of America Anthony Blinken, and the Secretary-General of the Cooperation Council Jassem Muhammad Al-Budaiwi, to emphasize the strategic importance of the historical relations between the two sides.

The two sides affirmed their joint commitment to build on the achievements of the previous ministerial meetings and the Jeddah Summit held on July 16, 2022, by strengthening consultation, coordination and cooperation in all fields.

The two sides focused on the ambitious and growing strategic partnerships between the United States and the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf and its member states, aimed at enhancing peace, security, stability, integration and economic prosperity in the Middle East.

The two sides also stressed the importance of joint efforts to work to reduce escalation in the region, stressing their joint commitment to supporting diplomacy to achieve these goals. The two sides also agreed on the importance of infrastructure projects in enhancing integration and interdependence in the region, and contributing to stability and prosperity at the regional level.

The two sides stressed the importance of supporting navigational rights and freedoms and collective efforts to address threats to the security of ships through the waterways in the region.

The Ministers also stressed the importance of countering terrorism and violent extremism around the world, and welcomed the upcoming Ministerial Meeting of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, which will be held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on June 8, 2023.

Secretary Blinken affirmed the United States' permanent commitment to the security of the region, and its awareness of the vital role of this region in the global economy and international trade.

Iran:

The Cooperation Council and the United States of America affirmed their commitment to freedom of navigation and maritime security in the region, and their determination to confront any aggressive or illegal acts at sea or anywhere else that would threaten shipping lanes, international trade and oil installations in the GCC states.

The two sides affirmed their support for the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and renewed their call on Iran for full cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The Ministers welcomed the decision of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Iran to resume diplomatic relations, stressing the importance of countries in the region adhering to international law, including the United Nations Charter.

Yemen:

The two sides stressed the importance of the ongoing peace efforts led by the United Nations in Yemen after the April 2022 armistice and the calm that resulted from it, and expressed their deep appreciation for the efforts made by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Sultanate of Oman, the United Nations envoy and the United States envoy in this regard. The two sides expressed their hope to see a comprehensive Yemeni-Yemeni political process leading to a permanent end to the conflict, responding to Yemenis' calls for justice, accountability for human rights violations and abuses, and putting the country on the path to recovery.

The two sides also affirmed their support for Yemen's sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity, and their support for the Presidential Leadership Council in Yemen and urged the Houthis to seize this opportunity and take advantage of the past 14 calmer and more stable months to provide relief to millions of Yemenis.

The ministers stressed the importance of continuing to meet the humanitarian needs of the people in all regions of Yemen and to provide economic and development support throughout the country. The two sides also affirmed their support for the efforts led by the United Nations to confront the environmental and economic threat posed by the Safer oil tanker off the coast of Yemen.

The Palestinian issue and Israel:

The two sides reaffirmed their commitment to reaching a just, lasting and comprehensive peace in the Middle East in accordance with the two-state solution, based on the 1967 borders and any agreement between the two sides on land swaps, in accordance with internationally recognized standards and the Arab Peace Initiative.

The two sides also stressed the need to refrain from all unilateral measures that undermine the two-state solution, raise the level of tension, and preserve the historical status quo in the holy places in Jerusalem, stressing the special role of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in this regard.

The Ministers also expressed their appreciation for Egypt's decisive role in mediating between the armed factions in Gaza and Israel during the recent hostilities. The Ministers also stressed the importance of their support for the Palestinian Authority and the improvement of the daily lifestyle of the Palestinians through humanitarian aid and efforts to support the Palestinian economy. Both sides reaffirmed their support for the Palestinian Authority.

Syrian:

On the Syrian issue, the two sides reaffirmed their commitment to reaching a political solution to the Syrian crisis in a way that preserves Syria's unity and sovereignty, meets the aspirations of its people, and is consistent with international humanitarian law, in line with UN Security Council Resolution No. 2254 (2015). In this regard, the ministers welcomed the Arab efforts to resolve the crisis in a step-by-step manner in accordance with Security Council Resolution 2254, as agreed upon during the Amman consultative meeting of the Arab Ministerial Contact Group on Syria on May 1, 2023.

The Ministers reaffirmed their support for the US and Coalition forces working to defeat ISIS in Syria, and condemned all actions that threaten the safety and security of these forces.

The two sides stressed the need to create safe conditions for the safe, dignified and voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced persons in accordance with the standards of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and the importance of providing the necessary support to Syrian refugees and the countries that host them. The two sides also reaffirmed their call for a ceasefire, welcomed the UN Secretary-General's call to renew the Security Council's mandate for 12 months to operate the cross-border mechanism, and expressed support for the inclusion of all currently open border crossings (Bab al-Hawa, Bab al-Salam and al-Rai) in a Security Council resolution to be issued in July. Next.

The two sides also discussed the issue of arbitrarily detained and missing persons - as mentioned in the Amman Declaration and Security Council Resolution 2254, and in coordination with all concerned parties.

Iraq:

The two sides praised the positive and growing partnership between the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf and Iraq, and welcomed the continuous progress in the electrical interconnection project to link Iraq to the electricity network in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. The Iraqi people and the region. With the completion of this project, it will provide the energy needed by the Iraqi people, and pave the way for more economic cooperation in the future. The ministers also discussed the importance of civilian-led efforts in Iraq, including economic reforms to ensure that the people of Iraq benefit from the country's natural resources, achieve stability and ensure society recovers from conflict and ISIS violence, and strengthen efforts to prevent terrorist financing and counter ISIS's terrorist narrative, thereby strengthening Iraq's capabilities in the fight against terrorism. The two sides affirmed their support for a secure, stable and fully sovereign Iraq.

Sudan:

The two sides expressed their grave concern about the recent outbreak of fighting in Sudan, and the ministers affirmed the Cooperation Council's support for the diplomatic efforts led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States in Jeddah, to reach an agreement between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces to fully implement a short-term ceasefire agreement, and allow access Humanitarian aid without hindrance. They reaffirmed their support for diplomatic efforts aimed at achieving a permanent cessation of hostilities in Sudan. The two sides also affirmed their conviction that there is no military solution to end the conflict, calling on the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces to silence their weapons.

The war in Ukraine:

The Ministers reaffirmed the importance of respecting the principle of sovereignty and international law, including the United Nations Charter, and the obligation to refrain from the use or threat of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state. The ministers urged all countries and the international community to intensify their efforts to reach a peaceful solution, end the humanitarian crisis, support refugees, displaced persons and others affected by the war in Ukraine, as well as facilitate the export of grain and other food supplies, and support food security in the affected countries.

The strategic partnership between the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf and the United States:

The ministers affirmed their common determination to contribute to achieving regional security and stability within the framework of the strategic partnership between the GCC and the United States. The Ministers commended the outcomes of the meetings of the Joint Working Groups on Integrated Air and Missile Defense, Maritime Security, and Iran, which were held in Riyadh from February 13 to 15, 2023. They commended the deliberations of the Fourth Trade and Investment Dialogue meeting, which was held on March 9, 2023, in Riyadh. They noted the joint military exercises that took place between their armed forces within the framework of the joint naval forces. The Ministers decided to convene the Joint Working Group on Cyber Security later this year. The ministers stressed the importance of continuing the periodic working groups to discuss defense issues, and decided to hold another round of the joint working groups on integrated air and missile defense and maritime security later this year. The ministers will then discuss the possibility of convening working groups on military readiness, training and streamlining the transfer of vital defense capabilities.


Tuesday, May 30, 2023

What happens now that Erdogan is re-elected president of Turkiye?

    Tuesday, May 30, 2023   No comments

Two weeks ago, the American New York Times reported that European leaders would be happy to have an "easier Turkey," referring to the European desire for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to lose in the current presidential elections.

The newspaper pointed out that Westerners, especially the US administration, would like to see Erdogan lose, in favor of opposition figure Kemal Kilicdaroglu.

The New York Times said that Turkey, an important and strategic member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), has become, under Erdogan's rule, "an increasingly troublesome partner of the European Union."


However, "NATO", according to the newspaper, hopes that the change of Turkish leadership "will lead to an end to the confrontation over the approval of Sweden's membership in the alliance," before the summit scheduled to be held in Vilnius, Lithuania, next July.


Within Turkey, the opposition and its candidate, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, whom the Western media called "Turkey's Gandhi," sought to overthrow Erdogan.


And the opposition exploited anti-refugee sentiments to try to win the elections, according to the British "Guardian". Kilicdaroglu tried to win the support of voters, especially the youth, taking advantage of the difficult economic conditions, and promised to restore the parliamentary system, after its improvement, to the country.


Now, after Erdogan announced his victory in the presidential elections in its second round, what will the picture look like, at home and abroad?


Globally:

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace saw that the margin of creative thinking for the West will be limited with Erdogan's victory, as "21 years of experience with the current government has mostly exhausted the West's expectations of a qualitative improvement in relations."


And the Turkish president's victorious exit from this juncture means, according to the foundation, that Erdogan and his "indomitable sense" will reach new highs, which will increase what it called his "fiery behavior."


As for the relations between Ankara, Washington, and the rest of the Western capitals, the foundation said that they would be "devoid of flexibility and subject to circumstantial crises."


The reason behind this lies in the fact that Turkey will be in dire need of foreign financial flows due to the economic hardship the country is witnessing, as the Foundation said, which will prompt Erdogan to manage his country's foreign policy within the constraints of this reality, that is, with "less adventurism and more stability." .


But at the same time, the AKP leader will continue to "see Turkey as a regional power, and a member of a new club of countries," which includes China and Russia, which sees itself as an independent power bloc, according to the Institute for Turkish Studies at Stockholm University.


The European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) said that the approach of Turkish treatment in foreign policy will continue while Erdogan remains in power, and the strained relations with the European Union will continue, "without any progress towards constructive engagement."


In the eastern Mediterranean, the site saw that tensions with Cyprus and Greece will not recede, but rather may escalate, with Ankara pressing for a two-state solution on the island.


As for Syria, the site expected the Turkish government's attempts, under Erdogan's rule, to continue to normalize its relations with Syria and other countries. This would facilitate the return of some Syrian refugees to their homeland, as the website said, bearing in mind that the issue of asylum is a top concern for Turkish voters.


For its part, the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) suggested that the United States and Europe would remain silent, and work to find new ways to work with Erdogan upon his victory.


And while relations are expected to be turbulent with the West, it is seen that they will be more stable with Russia, especially after the participation of Erdogan and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, in an official ceremony marking the start of supplying the Akkuyu nuclear power plant with nuclear fuel, days before the start of the elections. public in Turkey.


During the ceremony, which was held last April, Putin stressed that the station is the most important project for Russia and Turkey, and promised that it would allow the development of joint economic relations and the promotion of coexistence between the two countries.


Under Erdogan, Turkey maintained its relations with Russia, at a time when the West cut it off after Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine. Recently, Ankara played the most prominent role, along with the United Nations, in completing the "grain deal" between Ukraine and Russia, which Erdogan announced its extension two weeks ago.


This deal is an integral part of a set of specific agreements for a period of 3 years, which provide for the lifting of the ban on Russian exports of food and fertilizers, the reconnection of the Russian Agricultural Bank to the “SWIFT” system, and the resumption of the supply of agricultural machinery, spare parts and services.


Domestically:

On the domestic front, the head of the Justice and Development Party announced that his economic program for the next stage reveals a return to more traditional policies regarding the "free market" economy.


There is talk that Erdogan's economic program will be very similar to that laid out in the AKP's 2002 electoral platform. In other words, the AKP will return to its "origins" and abandon "heretical economics".


During the past months, the Turkish government has resorted to what is called the "election economy", which permeates it by increasing government spending and reducing collection, by raising the minimum wage, facilitating loans, scheduling debts, and supporting some segments.


The public coalition, led by Erdogan, seeks to increase Turkey's gross domestic product and increase annual growth by 5.5% from 2024 to 2028.


Likewise, the alliance is working to achieve a gross domestic product of $1.5 trillion by the end of 2028, to adopt a policy of developing the defense industries sector and combating terrorism, and to establish the "Istanbul Canal" project.


The Turkish president promised the voters to make Turkey "strong and multi-alliance," and also promised to create 6 million jobs, accusing the West of "trying to overthrow him, after more than two decades in power," in addition to giving tourism a big boost.


However, the opposition is suspicious of Erdogan's promises, especially on the economic issue, and its alliance has made many economic promises. However, the most prominent criticism that reached it is that it does not provide clear mechanisms and policies to achieve its promises.


Faced with this reality, the Turkish interior is vulnerable to a raging political ram between the elected president and his opponents, especially with Kilicdaroglu's statement that he is "sad for Turkey's future", without officially acknowledging the loss.


The issue of the political system that governs the country was raised as one of the main headlines over which electoral competition was intensified. While the opposition was threatening to restore the parliamentary system to rule Turkey in the event of the victory of its candidate, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the "Justice and Development" promised to preserve the presidential system.


According to the election results, Erdogan's assumption of power for another 5 years means the continuation of the presidential system, which provides the president with broad powers, most notably the direct appointment of senior state officials, including ministers, university presidents and judges.

_________

* Adapted from Fatima Karnib's reporting on the Turkish Elections

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Ukraine Official: Security of the entire Middle East region cannot be resolved without the complete de-occupation of Crimea

    Tuesday, May 23, 2023   No comments

A cryptic statement linking Ukraine to the security of the Middle East, was made by the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Danilov. Here it is:

“The issue of the security of the entire Middle East region... cannot be resolved without the complete de-occupation of Crimea."


 

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

An Israeli Institute for Studies publishes a video about a secret Iranian drone base dedicated to carrying out the “swarm attack”

    Wednesday, May 17, 2023   No comments

The Israeli “Alma” research institute published a video clip that monitors details, which it said is of a secret base for Iranian drones dedicated to carrying out large-scale attacks, or the so-called “swarm attack.”

According to the video, which was published by the Institute on its official page on “Twitter”, yesterday, Tuesday, the base of the Iranian marches is located underground in a mountainous area around the city of Shiraz, southern Iran.

The institute stated that the march base is located about 16 kilometers from an Iranian army air base, noting that it could threaten any country in the Middle East if Iran decided to use it at any time, according to the Russian “Sputnik” agency.


According to the explanatory video published by the institute, the base has about 5 launch silos inside the rocks, each of which has 3 launchers.


The video also indicated that there are tunnels intended for loading vehicles to reach the base of the marches, which are estimated to be 3 kilometers long inside the mountain.

The video pointed out that the air base near the base is dedicated to securing the area using the Russian Su-24MK fighter.

And the Israeli research institute says that Iran has offensive drones that can reach a range of two thousand kilometers, which means that it can reach Israel and bypass it.

Iran has become among the best countries in the world to manufacture drones locally, especially by providing them with technologies that allow them to be used in carrying out the "swarm attack", which represents one of the most dangerous offensive tactics in modern warfare.

It is noteworthy that the Iranian army announced, last April, that it had received more than 200 strategic drones, to enhance its capabilities in the drone force.


Friday, April 21, 2023

In The News: Vatican official says the West bears a great responsibility in destabilizing the Middle East

    Friday, April 21, 2023   No comments

The Dean of the Department of Eastern Churches in the Vatican, Archbishop Claudio Gugerotti, said that the West bears a great responsibility in destabilizing the Middle East, because of its tendency to transfer its culture to the region, and to demand that its peoples adapt their lives to this culture.

The Dean of the Department of Eastern Churches added that they, "as Western Catholics, apologize for their support of this short-sighted vision," adding, "We commend your heroic efforts in being witnesses to our common faith over hardships, of all kinds."


The "Vatican News" website indicated that this statement was made in the presence of more than 250 representatives of the Catholic Churches in the Middle East, who were present at the opening of the "Rooted in Hope" symposium, which is being held in Nicosia until April 23, and is organized by the "ROACO" organization concerned with aid. Eastern churches.


Vatican Radio pointed out that what worries Archbishop Gugerotti is "the dispersion of Christians in the Middle East, resulting from the current tragic situation, which profoundly affects their daily lives."


It is noteworthy that Pope Francis said, last year, that the West cannot be described as an "example to follow" because it took the wrong path, describing it as the greatest graveyard of humanity.


He also said last month that the interests of multiple "empires" are driving the war in Ukraine, not just Russia, adding that the conflict was fueled by "colonial interests, and not only because of the Russian Empire, but because of other empires as well."


Sunday, March 19, 2023

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad arrives in the UAE on a surprise official visit, and meets his Emirati counterpart, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan

    Sunday, March 19, 2023   No comments

Today, Sunday, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad arrived in the UAE on an official visit, where he met his Emirati counterpart, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

The Syrian presidency stated, in a statement, that President al-Assad arrived "this afternoon in the United Arab Emirates on an official visit, during which he is accompanied by First Lady Asma al-Assad."

She added, "He was received upon his arrival at the presidential airport in Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates," noting that they went to the Al-Watan Palace in the capital, Abu Dhabi, to start the talks.

In turn, UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed said, "We held constructive talks with the Syrian president to support and develop brotherly relations for the benefit of the two countries."

"We are working to strengthen cooperation and coordination with Damascus on issues that serve stability and development," Mohammed bin Zayed added.

The delegation of the accompanying Syrian president included Minister of Economy and Foreign Trade Samer Khalil, Minister of Presidential Affairs Mansour Azzam, Minister of Information Boutros Hallaq, Assistant Foreign Minister Ayman Sousan, and Chargé d'Affaires of the Syrian Embassy in Abu Dhabi Ghassan Abbas.

It is noteworthy that the Emirati Foreign Minister, Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, visited the Syrian capital, Damascus, on the 12th of last February, in the first visit by a prominent foreign official, in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake that struck the north of the country on the 6th of the same month.


Sunday, March 12, 2023

Jordan: “elite” calls for a “quick review” and sending an “ambassador to Iran.”

    Sunday, March 12, 2023   No comments

A prominent journalist writer in Jordan called for stopping the case of courtesy of parties in favor of other parties and giving priority to the language of interests, which has become the basis for alliances, friendships and relations between countries among them today, indicating that the resumption of normal relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia shuffled all the cards in the region and may be mixed in the world.

Writer Muhammad Hassan al-Tal spoke in a bold article about the need to stop the policy of Jordanian diplomacy within the framework of courtesies at the expense of private and national interests.

In the article he published on his website and the Ammon newspaper, he said that Oman had earlier withdrawn its ambassador from Tehran to appease Riyadh after a well-known incident. Muhammad al-Tal considered this in his article a form of courtesy in favor of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

He said that political positioning today assumes that Jordanian diplomacy and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will review the policies of appeasement and courtesy in international relations, hinting that Jordanian diplomacy in the past had great weight in bringing points of view closer together.

It seemed clear that the sudden announcement of the resumption of relations in the bosom of a major country in the world such as China between Tehran and Riyadh was a shock to many Jordanian political and media elites, especially in light of the conviction that Jordan continued to compliment Saudi Arabia at the expense of its own interest when it came to withdrawing its ambassador seven years ago in protest against The burning of the Saudi consulate in southern Iran.

In any case, Al-Tal's article was not the only one. It talked about a necessary review that has now become the performance of Jordanian diplomacy, the former Minister of Culture and Youth, who is also a prominent writer and researcher, Dr. Muhammad Abu Rumman.

By most estimates, calls are issued in the Jordanian Parliament soon after the agreement between Saudi Arabia and Iran to reconsider the diplomatic formula that Jordan or the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs usually follows in formulating relations and alliances.

It is most likely that the Iranian-Saudi agreement, which the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs did not know anything specific about, rather the Jordanian government was surprised by it. The formula and equation on which relations between Jordan and the rest of the countries are established.

  A lot of sharp critical considerations have recently appeared in the Jordanian media for the performance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its Minister Ayman Safadi, especially after the so-called security summit in Aqaba.

Which failed on the one hand, and senior writers very close to the authorities appeared within the framework of this call for review and criticism. A prominent article by the well-known writer and political historian Ahmed Salama had talked exclusively about what he called Ayman Safadi's adventure at the Aqaba summit.

In any case, the acceleration of events today in the region constitutes a violent pressure on Jordanian diplomacy, especially since the boycott with Iran was practically neither justified nor understood. For more than seven years, Minister Safadi was insisting behind the scenes not to name a new ambassador after the previous minister was Dr. Abdullah Abu Rumman. The last appointed ambassador of Jordan to the Iranian Republic, but he was later appointed to an Asian country and did not leave to take up his duties in Tehran.

Surprising Saudi Arabia, its pace has become very fast. Rather, it surprises Jordanian institutions from time to time. What shows the lack of coordination or exchange of information is that the political relations between Jordan and Saudi Arabia are practically in an incomprehensible cold state for more than two years, as there are no high connections, no investment support, and no coordination in files. raised and basic.

As the general feeling seemed to consider the absence of relations with Iran and the negative relations with Saudi Arabia as among the main elements that reveal Jordan's back and confirm the error of its diplomatic calculations.

Rather, it weakens it, as stated in the decisions and recommendations of a closed symposium held recently in the Dead Sea in front of the Israeli right-wing government and the dangers of adapting to it, although relations between Jordan and the region seem balanced, but they are confused with Iraq, hesitant with the Syrian regime, and bad with Saudi Arabia.

And it raises controversy by virtue of its alliance with a country like the Emirates, which has many problems with Qatar, and the challenges here in front of Jordanian diplomacy have become great, and the spotlight is exclusively on Minister Ayman Safadi, and the search situation has intensified for a new approach in Jordanian diplomacy after the Iranian-Saudi relations.


Emir of Kuwait: The agreement between Saudi Arabia and Iran is an important step towards achieving regional and international security and stability, and it will be in the interest of the peoples of the region


The Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, confirmed today, Sunday, that the agreement between Saudi Arabia and Iran is an important step to achieve regional and international security and stability.

This came in two congratulatory telegrams sent by the Emir of Kuwait to both Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi, in which he expressed his sincere congratulations on the tripartite joint statement issued by Saudi Arabia, Iran and China regarding Riyadh and Tehran reaching an agreement that includes agreeing to resume diplomatic relations between the two countries. and reopen their embassies.

Al-Sabah praised the keenness of the two countries and their joint endeavor, which was embodied through this constructive and important agreement, which is an important step towards achieving regional and international security, stability and prosperity, and advancing cooperation between the two countries in the interest of all the peoples and countries of the region.


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